HOIL1 Is Essential for the Induction of Type I and III Interferons by MDA5 and Regulates Persistent Murine Norovirus Infection

J Virol. 2018 Nov 12;92(23):e01368-18. doi: 10.1128/JVI.01368-18. Print 2018 Dec 1.


The linear ubiquitin chain assembly complex (LUBAC), composed of heme-oxidized IRP2 ubiquitin ligase 1 (HOIL1), HOIL1-interacting protein (HOIP), and SHANK-associated RH domain-interacting protein (SHARPIN), is a crucial regulator of multiple immune signaling pathways. In humans, HOIL1 or HOIP deficiency is associated with an immune disorder involving autoinflammation, immunodeficiency, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)-like symptoms. During viral infection, LUBAC is reported to inhibit the induction of interferon (IFN) by the cytosolic RNA sensor retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I). Surprisingly, we found that HOIL1 is essential for the induction of both type I and type III IFNs, as well as the phosphorylation of IFN regulatory factor 3 (IRF3), during murine norovirus (MNoV) infection in cultured dendritic cells. The RIG-I-like receptor, melanoma differentiation-associated protein 5 (MDA5), is also required for IFN induction and IRF3 phosphorylation during MNoV infection. Furthermore, HOIL1 and MDA5 were required for IFN induction after Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus infection and poly(I·C) transfection, but not Sendai virus or vesicular stomatitis virus infection, indicating that HOIL1 and LUBAC are required selectively for MDA5 signaling. Moreover, Hoil1-/- mice exhibited defective control of acute and persistent murine norovirus infection and defective regulation of MNoV persistence by the microbiome as also observed previously for mice deficient in interferon lambda (IFN-λ) receptor, signal transducer and activator of transcription factor 1 (STAT1), and IRF3. These data indicate that LUBAC plays a critical role in IFN induction to control RNA viruses sensed by MDA5.IMPORTANCE Human noroviruses are a leading cause of gastroenteritis throughout the world but are challenging to study in vivo and in vitro Murine norovirus (MNoV) provides a tractable genetic and small-animal model to study norovirus biology and immune responses. Interferons are critical mediators of antiviral immunity, but excessive expression can dysregulate the immune system. IFN-λ plays an important role at mucosal surfaces, including the gastrointestinal tract, and both IFN-λ and commensal enteric bacteria are important modulators of persistent MNoV infection. LUBAC, of which HOIL1 is a component, is reported to inhibit type I IFN induction after RIG-I stimulation. We show, in contrast, that HOIL1 is critical for type I and III IFN induction during infection with MNoV, a virus that preferentially activates MDA5. Moreover, HOIL1 regulates MNoV infection in vivo These data reveal distinct functions for LUBAC in these closely related signaling pathways and in modulation of IFN expression.

Keywords: HOIL1; LUBAC; MDA5; interferons; norovirus; ubiquitination.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caliciviridae Infections / genetics
  • Caliciviridae Infections / metabolism
  • Caliciviridae Infections / microbiology
  • Caliciviridae Infections / virology*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dendritic Cells / metabolism
  • Dendritic Cells / microbiology
  • Dendritic Cells / virology
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism
  • Fibroblasts / microbiology
  • Fibroblasts / virology
  • Genome, Viral
  • Interferon Lambda
  • Interferon Regulatory Factor-3 / genetics
  • Interferon Regulatory Factor-3 / metabolism
  • Interferon Type I / genetics
  • Interferon Type I / metabolism*
  • Interferon-Induced Helicase, IFIH1 / genetics
  • Interferon-Induced Helicase, IFIH1 / metabolism*
  • Interferons / genetics
  • Interferons / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Microbiota
  • Norovirus / genetics
  • Norovirus / pathogenicity*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / physiology*


  • Interferon Regulatory Factor-3
  • Interferon Type I
  • Interferons
  • Rbck1 protein, mouse
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases
  • Ifih1 protein, mouse
  • Interferon-Induced Helicase, IFIH1
  • Interferon Lambda